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Top Challenges in American Politics

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By , January 26, 2014 8:23 pm

American politics faces several top challenges such as public debt, healthcare, gun control, illegal immigration, redefining the role of the government, or gay marriage. All these are hot national issues that need to be addressed and solved in a constructive manner. Of course, some are more important than others. The American republic will not stand or fall based on a consensus decision on gay marriage but may fall if the country is headed toward fiscal bankruptcy. We have some serious challenges to deal with and unless we get the big issues fixed our underlying problems will get worse. We need to find constructive solutions for these top challenges or else the living conditions in America are going to deteriorate.

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The question of economy and creation of jobs is one the top issues we face today. We need to find ways to create more jobs that can provide a decent income. The old industrial economy in United States continues to shrink and that trend negatively affects the middle class. The manufacturing economy in America is dead and we cannot expect to revive it or even try it. Long term job security is a big issue for a third of the American workforce. We need to find ways to create post-manufacturing jobs to replace to old ones and that cannot be achieved without taking the lead in new sectors such as biotechnologies and nanotechnologies. We also face a service crunch. While the demand for services as health care and education is growing rapidly, our ability to supply the quality and quantity of the demanded services can’t keep pace with the demand. We have dysfunctional systems in education and health care and it’s time to fix them if we want to progress. The tuition fees for college and university are growing in a rate that makes it difficult for many to have access to higher education. Many who already graduated from colleges and universities are hardly dealing with debt. However, new technologies will need an educated workforce.

The health care costs are exploding and can drive the country on course to bankruptcy. These issues will not just disappear on their own. We need to find real solutions and we need to move fast. Our health care system needs some serious corrections as it’s known that more than 500 people are dying from infections, accidents and medical errors more than one third of the total health care costs. That adds hundreds of billions of dollars in unnecessary health care costs. Statistics are saying that one in four Medicare beneficiaries admitted to a hospital are harmed in some way during their stay. A third or more of health costs are wasted. These are alarming signals that our health care system is dysfunctional and something should be done to fix it. We really don’t do well, comparing with other developed nations in the world. The price of health care in the America has increased significantly, but unfortunately the quality of health care services and the medical outcomes for patients are not so great.

Redefining the role of the government is one of the priorities of the moment. Governance needs to become more effective and responsive, but at a reasonable price. We also face a difficult demographic transition. Our social insurance system and the system of pensions were built on the assumption that each generation would be larger than its predecessor. The demographics are changing and the public and private pension systems face now a variety of challenges. Unfortunately, if the social services will continue to increase at the current rate the high deficits will increase the national debt at an unsustainable level and will bankrupt the country. The high level of public debt is another big issue we need to address if we want to avoid national bankruptcy. The government should take more decisive action on the growing debt and adopt a fair tax reform that would include flat and fair tax. The two political parties need to find a compromise solution and abandon the divergent positions on hot issues in order to provide effective leadership. Compromise would enable the country to move forward.

Illegal immigration is another hot issue. The president and the Congress need to focus on designing a systemic reform on immigration laws. For the past decades the issue of illegal immigration wasn’t addressed properly and has become a growing problem. Since the influx of Mexican illegal immigrants in the ��50s the situation continued to deteriorate. Statistics show that from the 40 million immigrants in US more than 11 millions are illegal. We need to deal with this issue based not only on pragmatic reasons but also on principled reasons. America is a nation built by immigrants and event the illegal immigrants can enrich our nation with their hard work and skills. Most of the Americans consider that the immigration legislation should create a legal frame for illegal immigrants to remain in the country under certain conditions. Instead of making from illegal immigration a criminal act we would better find way to integrate them and use them in our advantage.

The gun control debate continues without a clear solution. After the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, the nation’s attention focused once again on this issue. The root cause of gun violence should be indentified and eradicated. Gun control advocates and groups such as National Rifle Association need to take part of this discussion in a rational way and leave emotions behind if we want to have a real progress on the matter. One argument that NRA love to use is that guns would be necessary for personal security but pro-gun advocates might be wrong in their approach. The death rate by gun shootings and the criminality is increasing in the United States instead to decrease. Guns don’t seem to make our society safer. It is true that Americans have the constitutional right to bear arms. It’s not about making them illegal but finding ways for a better control of who can buy them and how they use them. Stronger gun control laws may prevent loss of life. Certain people should not be permitted to buy and own guns.